Headlights for 2012 Sonata

The headlights for my 2012 Sonata do not work well. I think this all started when the high beams stopped working a few years ago and I decided to replace them myself. I replaced one (driver’s side?), but wasn’t able to figure out how to replace the second and had a (reliable???) mechanic replace the other.
The current situation is that at night the regular headlights turn on but everyone who rides in this car agrees that they do not illuminate the road well enough. If I drive with the high beams on, then I can see fine, but of course I can’t always do that. Any thoughts about why this would be and how much it should cost to fix this problem?

Are your lenses glazed over?

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Short Answer: No
Longer Answer: When I saw your message, I thought that “Yes, they are”, but then I went outside to look at the car and they seem perfectly clear to me.

Replace the bulbs. After 8 years, they need to be replaced. They dim naturally over time.

Is this something an amateur can do?

Sure. If I can do it, you can, too.

Can you recommend a good video for this?

I never used a video, just a repair book before videos were available. This is a very easy job. Do a web search for your year and make car for headlight bulb replacement. I’ve done this on Honda’s and GM cars and am not familiar with your car.



Quite frankly, if you needed to take it to a mechanic last time as you stated, you might not have the mechanical acumen for this.

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Thank you. This is what I did before. For some reason I thought this was for the high beams. This is definitely for the regular lights, right?

I appreciate your directness and honesty. From what I see in the video, this is what I did before, so I’m confident that I can do it again. I think I had trouble with one of the two lights, but I think that is something I might be able to work around. I’m wondering if I bought cheap bulbs last time or maybe I touched the bulb with my hands.
Any suggestion for a good bulb to use with my 2012 Sonata?

First consideration is are the lights on while driving? If so look for hours of life expected. The brighter bulbs may offer way less hours.

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Wagner, Sylvania or Philips are fine

Sylvania silverstar ultra are the brightest, but the trade off is shorter bulb life, so you’d need to change them more often.

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This video is for H7 bulbs. When I look up H7 bulbs they always seem to be for high beams. My problem is the regular lights, not the high beams. Does anyone know if the bulbs being replaced in this video are for the regular headlights or the high beams?

Just handle the bulb by the electrodes.


This was very helpful. H11 is what I need for the low beam and H7 is for the high beam. I looked at my car and now I see exactly where each one is located.

Get one of the ultra bright ones. Their longevity is shorter but are brighter. Wife’s 2013 Sonata had the same issue, no nagging since I changed it. I don’t recall what brand I got, got it on amazon after reading reviews, but I am cheap. Probably whatever walmart is selling is just fine.